Say what you want about Oracle executive chairman and chief technology officer Larry Ellison, but he hasn’t lost his passion for taking shots at Amazon Web Services.
Ellison used Oracle’s first fiscal quarter earnings results to preview an upcoming database product scheduled to be announced October 1st at Oracle OpenWorld that he said would be “fully automated,” able to manage itself without human interaction to deliver “unprecedented reliability in the cloud.” Oracle will also give customers a service-level agreement that guarantees 99.995 percent uptime when the new database ships at the end of the year, he said.
“AWS can’t do any of this,” Ellison said. Oracle also plans to compete with RedShift, the main database product available through AWS, on price: the company will guarantee that RedShift customers who switch to this new database “can expect to cut their costs in half.”
Ellison does stuff like this a lot, and AWS is a frequent target. Almost exactly a year ago, Ellison used his slot at OpenWorld to bash RedShift’s performance, and it doesn’t seem like the rhetoric had much of an effect on either company’s database sales.
But this has been an interesting year for cloud databases. In May, Microsoft introduced a new database called Cosmos DB, and around the same time Google formally released Cloud Spanner. Amazon has made several improvements to RedShift over the course of the year ahead of its big re:Invent conference coming up in late November, which seems like a natural place to unveil something new.
Oracle beat analyst expectations for its first quarter with $9.2 billion in revenue and non-GAAP earnings per share of $0.62, but investors didn’t like its guidance for the upcoming quarter and punished the stock in after-hours trading.